Moving in by degrees
It's a different life here in the Red State. For one thing I have Republican senators. I was thinking that's a good thing because my phone calls actually make a difference here. When I called to urge them to vote no on Gonzales, I got through on the first ring. I don't suppose they were flooded with calls. And a strange little man approached me in a store aisle and told me he didn't understand how people could be anti-death penalty and pro-abortion and solicited my opinion on the Confederate flag. I guess it's obvious I'm not from around here.
I finally went into town to open a bank account. The bank, a national chain mind you, doesn't even have an ATM machine, although they assure me one will be going in soon. It will be a first for downtown. I walked around west side of the main street. It was a short walk. Three Noho type stores, well stocked but tiny with a lovely transformed alley between them with plants and benches.
Otherwise, there's an office building, a couple of bars, another bank, a coffeeshop and a handful of stores. The most successful seems to be the scrapper's store. Scrap books are apparently very big in the south. And then there's the hardware store. Clearly a holdover from before the building boom that's changing the character of the town, it's a huge space - 3 storefronts - filled with a delightful chaotic hodgepodge of every possible item from "little red wagons" and dungarees to cast iron cornbread pans and plumbing fixtures. Red wagons aren't cheap by the way. That deluxe model with the wooden sides that come off is over $150.00 but they were running a good sale on dungarees for ten bucks and folding metal chairs for five bucks a piece.
I had a look around and bought some stick on numbers for my mailbox. There a steady stream of locals coming through the whole time, buying the bits and pieces of fixing things. I think I'll go back and get some dungarees and a rake next time.
I'm having a few adjustment issues with home rentership. Garbage disposal becomes a challenge for instance without the dumpster. I finally managed to get my recycling out on the right day but the trash has been a dismal failure. The first time I forgot altogether and last time I apparently didn't get it out early enough. They told me they came first thing in the am to my hood, but who thought that would mean 6:00am? I hope I can still wheel the barrel up the driveway this week. Long driveway and a heavy barrel.
Meanwhile I paid my first round of bills here and I'm still not unpacked - not even close. In defense, lest you think I'm merely lazy, I might point out I haven't been here that much, probably less than two weeks out of the last month and with my erratic schedule, it's likely to take a while yet. I love having the carport though, it's nice not unloading the car in the rain and I love having an office and a coat closet. It makes me feel kind of grown up.